The blog is written by Marianna Wahlsten, Gennady Kurushin and Nikhilesh Haval from archi.tours who received the Uutisraivaaja prize in 2021.
The competition was an excellent opportunity to experiment with journalism, combined with new technologies such as virtual tours. The funding took away the financial pressure for creating such an experimental format, which allowed us to deliver a prototype for a digital platform.
The project has great potential and could be developed further, but we will need to figure out how it will be financed so that we would be able to add more content. We learned how to organize team work, which was an important part of the project as we have different professional backgrounds. We also learned that working remotely can be done successfully, although for starting a creative project, without any meetings in person, was a challenge.
During the process we realized that some of our initial assumptions had been unrealistic about being found online, and we had to review our plan and make corrections. There were also some positive deviations, such as architectural projects that we hadn’t planned initially, but got access to for featuring on the project.
The meeting with our mentor Pekka Ala-Pietilä only happened when the funded project was complete. But it was great to hear his view, particularly on the possible financial models, and more generally how these kind of projects could evolve further. There are different options for the financial model to consider and to test, and as we did not have any marketing budget, we have to rely on organic growth online. Recently it seems one of the leading US architecture schools has found us, and there has been an increase in visitor numbers to our site, which is very promising.